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cover story.... why more people are peeking into their pensions. plus...a preview of how the holiday shopping season is shaping up. the market is looking anxious... but one trader says there's no need for worry. and... why some movie goers are tuning out critics. first business starts now. you're watching first business: financial news, analysis, and today's investment ideas good morning. it's thursday, december 20th. i'm angela miles. in today's first look: politics and money -- stocks take a hit as president obama and congressman boehner both talk to america about where they stand on the fiscal cliff. oil was the only riser and at one point-- topped $90. shares of bed, bath and beyond fell in the after hours session on
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disappointing earnings news. reports say game company thq has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection but is not going out of business. and boeing is said to be using sacks of potatoes on planes instead of people to test a new wifi system. jared levy of joins us on the show this morning. good morning and you are among the traders riding that fiscal wave. > > it's a pretty big one. [laugh i hope it's over soon. > > i agree with you. so what do you think is likely to happen here? we had a selloff yesterday. > > i think yesterday's price action was more of the same. don't forget the s &p going into yesterday was a little overbought so yesterday's selloff was expected. today, don't forget, we've got some key numbers coming out. we've got unemployment, we have existing home sales, and then tomorrow's durable goods numbers. all of those really come into play but again, it's still all about the
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fiscal cliff. i think the key here to remember is--- i think a deal gets done. the question then becomes what are the ramifications of that deal? which we still don't know yet. > >the vix popped up about 11% in trading yesterday. sometimes that's a gauge of anxiety in the market. whay has it been so lackluster and all of a sudden we get this move in the vix? > > it's funny i've been talking recently about how the vix is a dying product and what i mean by that is for the average everyday individual the vix is a very tough sort of thing to read. and the reason being people aren't just buying calls and buying puts anymore. they're doing all kinds of complex strategies. so the vix moving higher, yeah there's more fear in the markets but i'll tell you what, take a look at some of these alcohol and tobacco companies. that's where you'll find some of the real fear. folks are buying a lot of those stocks because again we turn to those things when we're stressed out but in all honesty, the vix as an indicator right now not really showing alot of fear but definitely creeping higher. > >herbalife was very stressed out yesterday. it lost a lot of weight on word that there's some shorting going on in that stock. is this stock something that you would short?
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> >it's probably one that i would stay away from. we've talked a lot in the past about invest in what you know. invest in what you see. looking around in my social circles and going to pharmacies and going to supermarkets, i don't see a lot of herbalife products. nor do i talk to a lot of people using herbalife. so from that sort of perspective and from a valuation perspective, i think herbalife is one you could probably do without especially now that we're coming into the new year and all of these unknowns with the fiscal cliff. > > we'll see you back on the show tomorrow. that's jared levy of thanks jared. > > thanks angie. when teachers in california peeked into their pensions and found investment in a gun maker linked to the connecticut shootings, they reacted. and so did the private equity firm that made the investment. and it underscores just how easy it is to assume someone else has vetted investments made on behalf of employee groups. maggie ellis, a california teacher, active in state and local teacher organizations,
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had no idea her pension funds were going to freedom group-- gun makers, including one that made the assault rifle used to kill 20-children and six adults in connecticut, last friday. assault weapons are outlawed in california. ellis is not alone. a lot of people didn't know. it's led california's treasurer bill lockyer to criticize the investment saying teacher retirements "should not be invested in guns illegal in california. these weapons have no place in our communities. our families and children are safer without them." "is it possible to vette everyone? no. but you should be able to research hot-button issues and hot-button companies." ellis says the teachers relied on private equity firm cerberus capital to manage more than a half-billion dollars of retirement money. it's the largest teachers pension fund in the nation. this week, cerberus decided to sell its
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stake in freedom group. "how could the teachers not know cerebus invested in gun companies. they knew but the general constituents didn't know. and it wasn't an issue until it became 'an issue.'" ellis says she, like a lot of teachers, trusted not so much cerberus to inform her, as her own teachers retirement system--an organization created to invest pension money in stocks, bonds real estate and elsewhere. a spokesman for the organization said the freedom group investment slipped through because the teachers' deal with cerberus came before the teachers group began taking a hard look at what private equity firms did with their clients' money. "they may be looking forward and projecting that the next two years may not be as profitable as projected." that policy to scrutinize private equity investments began in 2008. the teachers retirement system is now going back to see if there are other investments in gun manufacturers before then. the horrific school shooting in newtown connecticut is boosting sales of bullet-proof backpacks. sales of the body armor backpacks have tripled at a
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company in salt lake city utah according to reports. the bags are made with a kevlar type material. several other companies sell similar backpacks. the companies however are being accused of attempting to cash in on tragedy. the backpack sell for around $300. despite a disappointing earnings report -- fed ex is expecting a record holiday season. this week's earnings from fed ex revealed profits were down in the 4th quarter. superstorm sandy played a role. however -- fed ex cites "persistant weakness" in the global economy -- as the main drag on profits, which fell 11.9 percent from last year. the beacon of hope for fed ex appears to be this holiday season. the company's ceo says online shopping is providing the opportunity for a record year. lawmakers are heading into crunch time on averting the fiscal cliff. yesterday, president obama said he wants a deal done by
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christmas. he also accused republicans of finding ways to say "no"... as opposed to ways to say "yes"-- to try to best him, rather than doing what's best for the country. today, the house is set to vote on a fallback tax plan-- known as plan b. it calls for tax hikes on americans earning more than $1 million dollars. > >then the president will have a decision to make. he can call on the senate democrats to pass that bill or he can be responsible for the largest tax increase in american history. with that comment-- the house speaker dramatically walked off the podium without taking questions. other cliff notes: the president calls today's vote a waste of time and plans to veto. congressman boehner claims the president is yet to propose a balance of tax cuts and revenue increases. the president says he has and adds the two sides are only 200 billion dollars apart in their negotiations. ubs will pay a $1.5 billion dollar settlement for its role in the libor interst rate scandal..
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and two ubs traders-- are facing charges for their involvement in the fraud. but there's another liability. reports say fannie mae and freddie mac may have lost at least $3 billion dollars in the ordeal.regulators say ubs rigged bank interest rates to make profits and hide losses. a couple of companies are closer to saying goodbye to bankruptcy. a court is approving the new contract deal between american airlines and its pilots-- that could lift the company out of bankruptcy. the judge did mention the sacrifices made by the pilots union meanwhile-- kodak just sold a chunk of it's patents for $525 million. apple, google and reseach in motion are among the buyers.the money made in the patent sale allows kodak to inch closer to getting out of bankruptcy. the company still holds 9,600 patents. a makeover of diesel powered vehicles is prompting some drivers to make a switch. clean diesel car sales were up 25 percent in 2012.
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within the last 5 years -- efforts have been made to make diesel engines more enviornmentally friendly. volkswagon, audi and mercedes are just a few automakers releasing diesels in 2013.. while popular in europe -- the cars have made less of an impact in the u-s due to the fact that diesel fuel is more expensive. there's currently a missing ingredient in the martha stewart empire -- a ceo. the ceo of martha stewart living omnimedia -- lisa gersh -- is leaving the company after just one year. the company is now looking for a replacement. other branches of the company including its publishing and broadcasting units have experienced recent declines. pfizer is cutting jobs in order to cope with losses from its popular drug lipitor. bloomberg reports the pharmaceutical company will cut fs over broll 20 percent of its workforce -- or around 600 sales jobs. pfizer's lipitor has seen an increase in competition within
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the generic drug market. a spokesperson for pfizer did not confirm the report --but did say the company is making changes to fit the future needs of business. facebook gave investors something to "like" in 2012.. despite it's botched ipo day. because it was a heavy hitter.. ipo values this year, topped last year. with $40 billion dollars in 2012 ipo money compared to $35.5 billion in 2011. 138 companies made it onto the market so far compared with 134 in 2011. ipo pipeline for 2013 could be brisk. a number of companies are filing for public trading under the jobs act. mark zuckerberg is getting into the spirit of giving this holiday. the facebook founder will donate 500 million dollars in facebook stock to charity. thats about 18 million shares under current levels. the gift will go to a nonprofit -- that helps match charities with willing donors.
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still to come the breakout film that is sending mixed messages to audiences.. in our check on the box office later on. but talks, but it also walks. a look at why foot traffic is an important indictator this holiday shopping season -- next with bill moller.
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love that music. well, we know that the december retail numbers are pretty important as those numbers are a measure of how consumers feel and it also tells us something about the slow recovery of the economy. the final numbers for the month probably won't be released until after the new year but we do have a good idea of what consumers are doing leading into the final weekend before christmas. chris angell, he's the director of global marketing for shopper trak. let me ask you about what you've found and it looks somewhat optimistic that you're expecting for at least novemer/december more people will be walking into stores buying. > > that's right. we do track these numbers globally and november and december are telling us that over last year we're expecting an increase in traffic. > >you did find there was a need to revise downward, was that some of the numbers from november? > >we have two different
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predictions we make. we have a sales projection and traffic. traffic is what we collect on a daily basis around the world. we also project sales. our sales numbers are revising down for the november/december period. > >so, the foot traffic---the number of feet walking into stores---is one thing but sales is the other side of it. > >that's right. in sales we are predicting a 3.3% increase as of about six weeks ago. today we're saying it's going to be down a little bit from there. about 2.5% increase over last year. > > you were telling me that one impact on consumer buying habits is the school shooting in connecticut. that actually has measurable impact on consumer behavior. > > we believe people stay out of stores when these national tragedies occur and begin to think a little bit about what's more important, so we do see a traffic trend when those things happen. > > what are on consumers minds? what influences them in
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terms of---i want to go out and buy? > > we think this year some things that are influencing them are the longer shopping period this year. > >thanksgiving came earlier so they had more time to have the christmas season. > > that's right. so they're thinking there's an extra day to go out and enjoy their families so that's a part of it. we also think that on a regular basis these consumers tend to think about what's happening in the news--that does affect their behavior. > > so all in all, even with the revision downward, it is going to be relatively interpreted as a positive year? > > absolutely. for the first time actually in four years we're seeing more people shopping and we do expect sales to increase over last year. chris angell from shopper trak, thanks so much. pleasure. still ahead some so-so reviews are translating into stellar numbers at the box office. a look at why --- next in movies and money.
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the hobbit scored huge numbers this weekend at the box office and that may have our movie guy erik childress grimacing just a bit here. good to have you back on the show. how do you reconcile that the hobbit's numbers were outstanding at the box office over the weekend and yet the reviews have been just ok, including a review from our very own director of this show? > > well, opening weekend was gonna be big no matter what. the lord of the rings obviously has its fans---the books, clearly. and so the biggest december opening of all time is not that big a surprise actually and the worldwide numbers follow that. but i have a feeling that the length of the film and the
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lukewarm reaction---even people who are positive about it have some negative things to say about the way it was filmed and its length and it being stretched over three movies--- it's on;y a 300 page book. i have a feeling it's not going to do as well domestically as the other lord of the rings films but like spiderman and ice age earlier this year the worldwide numbers are still going to be huge. > > it has a big fan base. let's take a look at the weekend numbers from the box office. as mentioned, the hobbit bringing in 84 million dollars. incredible. the rise of the guardians at 7.1 million, lincoln at 7 million, skyfall still hanging in there at 6.5 million, and life of pi at 5.4 million. now, life of pi isn't doing great here in the united states but it's doing tremendously well in china. > > over 200 million dollars worldwide, 84 of it's 135 million dollars--the international dollars--are coming from china. even in the u.s. the numbers aren't sexy as
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you might say---not a lot of number one finishes obviously but its finished fifth for four straight weekends which is kind of unique in itself. so there's obviously a lot of word of mouth out there for what i think is a tremendously flawed film but people are going to see it. it's not going to be an oscar favorite but it will be an oscar player. > > we have a lot to look forward to at the box office this weekend. jack reacher, monsters, inc. 3d, this is 40, and the guilt trip. > > we've got a couple of good movies to look forward to--- jack reacher the tom cruise film did tremendous with mission impossible last year. this film's not going to do as good---this is a new franchise for him. it's going to be interesting to see people's reaction to it because the film does open with a very deadly sniper shooting and obviosuly we've had the newtown shootings this week so i'm wondering how people are going to react to that. but it still is a very good escapist thriller. this is 40, judd apatow's new film is a very flawed film but has really big laughs so i'm definitely recommending that. the guilt trip with barbra streisand and seth rogen, you can see on the television a lot of people are saying it's the funniest film
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of the year. the reviews are not that good but i do think its gonna be a sleeper hit. and monsters inc. 3d i think hollywood might be sensing that the 3d re-release might be waning a little bit. > > i'm glad you said that about the guilt trip because i cannot see barbra streisand doing a shaky film. > > she's done some shaky films. > > oh come on, they weren't that bad. even the shaky ones were okay in my book. > > yeah, the last two fokkers movies. yeah, they're a little shaky. > >oh i loved it! we have to go. we're out of time. gotta go. we'll be right back with more. straight ahead-- will the sudden acceleration of gm stock hit the brakes.... or keep driving higher? find out next-- in chart talk.
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here's a great gift. no more government motors is becoming a popular line now that the government is selling its stake
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in gm. good morning to matt cavanaugh of cmz trading. let's talk about general motors. > > good morning. this is really good news. we've covered this stock beforeand really the big fear with this company was always that you know that there's a seller out there and not only is there a seller but there's somebody who's got a lot of it and they have to sell it so that was always a big fear there. > > would you buy this stock at the current levels? after the ipo we briefly touched $40. we've never seen $40 again in recent history. would you buy the stock? > > i think if you're looking to play a rebounding u.s. economy and a rebounding u.s. car industry then yes you would buy it. it looks much better now than any other time in the past that we've talked about it. just knowing that the government is going to sell their shares out, that there's a possibility that fund managers will get big institutional investors. and we've also had about 3 years of 10% plus growth and things are looking up for this company. so the stock looks cheaper on paper now, looks like things are
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moving in the right direction. we've removed this over head. maybe let some institutional buyers get in there and see what happens. > >good to have you on the show. that's matt cavanaugh of cmz trading. have a good trading day matt. > >thank you. that closes out our show for today.. coming up tomorrow-- it's traders unplugged...our pros turn into fortune tellers-- with outrageous predictions for the stock market.. that just might come true. from all of us at first business... thank you for watching and have a terrific thursday!
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. a grandmother is gunned down caught in the crossfire, we will have a live report. and a scare in san mateo that prompted a response overnight. and rain fall will soon making a come back. . good morning, it is thursday, december 20th, it is cold out there and it will be cold out there owl day, here is more -- there all day, here is

First Business
FOX December 20, 2012 4:00am-4:30am PST

Market Outlook News/Business. Angie Miles. (2012) Professionals discuss the stock market and the economy. New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY California 5, Pfizer 3, Herbalife 3, U.s. 3, Jared Levy 2, Ellis 2, Gm 2, Kodak 2, Barbra Streisand 2, Obama 2, Martha Stewart 2, Jack Reacher 2, Matt Cavanaugh 2, Boehner 2, Connecticut 2, Ubs 2, Chris Angell 2, China 2, Jared 1, Lisa Gersh 1
Network FOX
Duration 00:29:59
Rating G
Scanned in San Francisco, CA, USA
Source Comcast Cable
Tuner Channel 93 (639 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 704
Pixel height 480
Sponsor Internet Archive
Audio/Visual sound, color

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on 12/20/2012